Wow Wee!

Time goes so fast, I can’t believe I haven’t updated my blog in a while. Some iris from last week


I totally love iris


I love watching them grow and unfurl their petals


To show us their beautiful colors


And if you look closely, they actually sparkle


And then there are poppies


Another flower I absolutely love. The petals are so soft and flimsy, and their centers are so cool


And then there’s my Mom’s kitty, who is shedding enough fur for another whole cat right now. Pet her and your hand is full of fur


She’s still a little sweety, and it’s still very hard to capture a good photo of her!

Chanticleer Gardens

The other day I received the May 2008 Horticulture magazine and saw on pages 47-51 that Chanticleer Garden in Wayne, PA won The Award for Garden Excellence in 2007. I visited there in April 2005, before I was really into taking photos of everything, even though the people I was with wouldn’t believe that because I still have tons of photos from the place. But I don’t have any photos of the very cool old house or the signs. So here’s a bit of what I do have.

Ah, green grass.

Minder Ruin, where Minder House once stood – a second home on the property.

Terraces leading up to Minder Ruin.

These huge acorns are located within the ruin.

There’s nothing like spring trees and flowers in blossom. . .

I love this cool stone shed.

And the water garden.

We went into the woods (you know me, I have to go into the woods) and saw Jack in the Pulpit

Among other flowers:


And trees growing side by side:

And hellebores, one of my favorite springtime plants:

And flowering shrubs:



If you ever make it to the eastern end of PA, I recommend visiting Chanticleer Garden!

Garden Store Opens!

Yay! One of our favorite garden stores is open for spring again!! It’s the one that has the model trains that I posted about here, and they close after Christmas and open March 1st. We expected to see flowers today, but they weren’t out yet. But they have lots of pretty gloves:

The gloves on the left are new (to me) and VERY comfortable. They’re expensive, but I may just have to have a pair of these! They’re a brand called Womanswork. They kind of look like my gym gloves except they have fingertips. I like the pretty colors of mud gloves they have this year, too!

After I took this photo my Mom said “Do you have to photograph everything?” My response, of course, was “YES!” I mean after all, I have a blog and I *have* to have photos, and I *like* taking photos. I told her to ignore the woman with the camera!

They had some really pretty pots!

Hey, what’s with that freakin’ plastic bag junking up my photo! I didn’t notice that until now, else I would have *moved* it!

They had some flowering bromeliads in the houseplant section (we had to satisfy our need to see plants by going into the houseplants section):




And I love looking at all of the seed packages (even though I don’t buy these seeds):


I can’t *wait* to see the forced bulbs, lilies, and primroses, etc.!!

I Interrupt This Program. . .

I know I owe you a continuation of the Allegany State Park post, and I will do it, I promise! My finger got banged a few times while working today, so I can’t get carried away with posting today.

But I just have to show you this one thing! Yesterday while I was helping my Mom put her gardens to bed (cutting down hostas) a daddy long legs came towards me. I’m thinking, no biggie, but you’re there so let me take a macro of you. Oh my!! This guy (or gal) is way tooooo cool, I never knew! Check this out:

2007-09-16 DSC02381 crop

He/she looks like an Eastern Daddy Long Legs (Leiobunum spp.). If you’re sitting there going, yup, no big deal, what’s she raving over, well, I’ve never really looked closely at a Daddy Long Legs before, have you?

Audubon says they’re not a spider. Check out the details of this guy/gal in your favorite insect guide if you want to know more of his cool features (I would type it all here for you, but the finger deal, you know).

And here’s the same photo not so close.

2007-09-16 DSC02381

Here it looks like he’s using his second pair of legs as antennas because I was so close.

Sonnenberg Gardens

Yesterday we went to Sonnenberg Gardens in Canandaigua. For my long time readers, you may remember my Sonnenberg Gardens post from last year, wherein I said it is now a NY State Park, and they’re working to fix it up, slow but sure, after years of it having gone downhill.

One of the first things we saw was a turtle basking in the sunshine on a rock. Did a get a photo before he knew I was interested in him? No.

The next thing we spotted were the ducks while we were eating lunch. They were bathing themselves like mad, and then settled down for a nice long afternoon siesta.

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01823 crop

It looks like this one was naughty because it is separated from the rest sleeping on a hard rock instead of the relatively soft grass.

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01824 crop

After we were done eating, I saw this dragonfly.

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01777 crop

Then we saw these frogs, who thought they were hiding from us. It took me a while to find them but I knew they were there somewhere.

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01819 crop

We then went to the trial gardens and saw these gorgeous cosmos:

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01783

These vivid morning glories were along the fences:

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01790

There are signs like these now. Even though the sky looks evil in this picture, it was perfect day.

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01789

We went inside the conservatory:

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01797

And one of the first things we saw, besides the plants, are the fish, which made me think of Mary right away! This is the first place we noticed the water level was half of what it normally is, and the fountains and waterfalls all over the gardens were shut off.

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01798

Water for the City of Canandaigua comes from Canandaigua Lake, and since we haven’t had much rain this summer, maybe there is a water restriction there. I don’t know for sure.

In the cactus part we saw this cactus with some really cool flowers:

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01806

I’m skipping ahead now, to the part that we noticed they have been working on. They’ve cleaned up this statue and the area around her and in front of her,

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01833

And these guys in front of the woman statue:

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01832

You can see on the end of the “bench” how black these used to be:

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01837

The floor is totally gorgeous:

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01836

And they’re laying a new marble walk in front of the statue and along the side going towards the house.

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01838

I turned around and saw they’ve cleaned up the steps to the house, and saw the pile of marble waiting to be laid down:

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01840

Next we went to the rose garden. I love the color of this rose called ‘Singing in the Rain’

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01843

Here’s part of the aviary complex where they used to keep 891 birds representing 246 species. This particular building is meant to look like a small castle.

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01867

This is the first time we’ve been able to go into the ice house:

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01866

Where we saw carriages:

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01864

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01865

Imagine being socked into this pony cart. Maybe I’ll explain how this pony cart works in another post.

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01863

Here’s part of the carriage house, where the carriages used to be stored,

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01868

Here are the leaves of the Fern Leaf Beech (Fagus salvatica ‘Asplenifolia’). I love this tree. But there aren’t too many trees I don’t love.

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01875

And here’s the bipinnately compound leaf of the Kentucky Coffee Tree (Gymnocladus dioicus). My Mom is holding the leaf in the middle so I could photograph it:

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01877

I remember using this leaf in my plant collection for one of my classes and I had a hard time fitting it all onto a standard sized piece of mounting paper.

The trees still have issues at Sonnenberg, but I found out they’re working on them. Yay! I hope it’s not to late to save some of the old beauties there.

2007-08-19 Sonnenberg Gardens DSC01814

My Mom standing next to a Purple Beech (Fagus sylvatica ‘purpurea’) so you can see just how huge the trunk is!

Cornell Plantations, Ithaca

Yesterday Mom and I went to Ithaca to spend the day at the Robison-York Herb Garden at Cornell Plantations. Before we arrived, we stopped at GreenStar Cooperative Market for our picnic lunch (701 W. Buffalo St.).

2007-08-11 DSC01353

One of the things we bought for lunch was Tabouli. I’ve never had this before, and it was wonderful! I want to find this recipe so I can make it at home. I know, to non-vegetarian people, this probably looks icky, but to me, it looks like and was a bowl full of yummy energy:

2007-08-11 DSC01354

2007-08-11 DSC01355

Does anyone have a favorite Tabouli recipe they want to share with me?

We also had coleslaw and a tofu salad sandwich. All very filling. Sorry no pics of those!

When we arrived at the Herb Garden first thing we noticed was scaffolding all around the building. The roof is being repaired, and they took out all of the plants around the building so they wouldn’t get damaged.

2007-08-11 DSC01437

With all of the plants gone from around the building, I noticed this sign on the building:

2007-08-11 DSC01366_crop

The entrance to the gardens was as gorgeous as it ever is.

2007-08-11 DSC01376

2007-08-11 DSC01373

Each entrance container had a pineapple growing in it! Pineapple is the symbol for “welcome,” so that was really cool!

2007-08-11 DSC01367

They have orchid lilies in containers – what a cool idea this is!

2007-08-11 DSC01369

I think I showed you this Big Leaf Magnolia (Magnolia macrophylla) with the cool seed head last year here (it had a bird’s nest in it):

2007-08-11 DSC01361

There were pollinators of many types all over everything there:

2007-08-11 DSC01402_crop

2007-08-11 DSC01418_crop

Including huge bees:

2007-08-11 DSC01445_crop

Speaking of bees, I found one hanging out on the hand I had my camera in, and it is a good thing I had the camera strap around my wrist, because it would have been flung into the next county! I flung that stinging thing off my hand so fast I’m sure it is still dizzy. Even my Mom noticed that all manner of insects like to land on me. I know they’re supposed to be minding their own business, but they make me part of their business. What am I releasing pheromones, or do I have pollen? Hmmmm. . .

This beautiful butterfly stayed open long enough for me to capture it – yay!

2007-08-11 DSC01427_crop

And I spied an ant hauling a huge (for it) insect:

2007-08-11 DSC01477_crop

The gardens were so gorgeous this year:

2007-08-11 DSC01399

2007-08-11 DSC01448

2007-08-11 DSC01474

The sundial on the millstone was two hours off, but that’s okay. It’s still very cool!

2007-08-11 DSC01458

I love this unfurling leaf:

2007-08-11 DSC01478

Which when totally unfurled will look like this:

2007-08-11 DSC01480

We visited the gift shop (of course) because they usually have at least one book that is new to me. And I wasn’t disappointed this year! I found ‘Ferns of the Vicinity of New York‘ by John Kunkel Small


Field Guide to the Grasses, Sedges and Rushes of the United States‘ by Edward Knobel and


Guide to the Plant Communities of the Central Finger Lakes Region‘ by Mohler, Marks & Gardescu


After we had our fill of the gardens, we went to Aladdin’s Natural Eatery for dinner (100 Dryden Rd.).

2007-08-11 DSC01483

We’ve been going to Aladdin’s for years in Rochester, and now they have a restaurant in both Ithaca and Syracuse. Yay!! We ate outside in the perfect weather.

2007-08-11 DSC01485

Mmmm, they have the best lentil soup and garden salad! They also have great hummus, but I wasn’t hungry enough for hummus after the big lunch we had.

Now this is what weekends are all about!

In Bloom This Week, in part

So I was trying to use up my camera battery so I can recharge it in time for another couple of trips, and I got overly anxious with it and used it all up before I was done with it! So here’s a partial look at what’s in bloom this week.

Gazania – I love the colors in this and I think it is so cool:

2007-06-24 DSC00789

It’s so cool in fact, that it has not only rusty orange blossoms, but yellow blossoms on the same plant, hmmmm:

2007-06-24 DSC00788

Okay, now Mom puts her amaryllis out in the garden so the leaves can grow and feed the bulb, it isn’t *supposed* to blossom this time of year, but here is one of them, in it’s full bloom:

2007-06-24 DSC00790

It will be interesting to see what happens to this bulb in the winter.

Well, this next thing isn’t in bloom, but I love the colors of coleus:

2007-06-24 DSC00768

And this delphinium is the prettiest shade of light purple:

2007-06-24 DSC00761

I’m trying to get braver with insects, even the stinging ones (I won’t mention the squeal I let out when a hornet landed on my chest – ahem, you know where – my Mom LOL and asked me if I was trying out for the opera).

2007-06-24 DSC00760

I love these yellow lilies:

2007-06-24 DSC00756

And here’s another clematis vine in blossom:

2007-06-24 DSC00748

So Mom asked me to get some stones for her to put on the wire mesh columns she’s started to put around her baby plants because the deer are eating everything this year (it seems that way) the freakin’ piggies. And I spied the pile of stones my Dad and I piled up last year in anticipation of continuing a stone path this year, and I broke down. What the heck, over a pile of rock. Everyone has told me it is those things you so don’t expect that get right to you.

Okay, back to happy stuff – here’s little Miss Kitty who was being her cute little self again yesterday, but I’m still not able to get close photos because she’s still waaaay too nosey!

2007-06-24 DSC00793

Last Week’s (and some of this week’s) Plants in Bloom

Remember last week I forgot my camera when I went to my Mom’s house, but I used her camera, and finally brought the photos home. Okay, so last week the Quince flowers were open:


And the rhododendrons were beautiful (the heat killed the blossoms way too fast this year):


And the azaleas (same deal with the blossoms and the heat):


And gaznia, which the woodchucks promptly ate (grrrr):


And Solomon’s Seal (I wanted a macro of these, but I didn’t use Mom’s camera right to get a good macro):


And this week, I started taking photos and then it started raining so I didn’t get to finish. Here’s some flowers from the Weigela shrub. The first one has a little bee inside:

2007-06-03 021

2007-06-03 023

The beautiful German Iris we planted last fall are starting to blossom:

2007-06-03 026

2007-06-03 030

2007-06-03 031

I enjoy iris buds, too:

2007-06-03 032

A different view of some of the ferns:

2007-06-03 037

And then the storm hit (wind and rain):

2007-06-03 038

As I was planting seeds this damselfly was flitting about, making it really hard to get a good photo – this was the best I could do:

2007-06-03 007_crop

Weekly Dose of Beauty

Yesterday for Mother’s Day my Mum wanted to work outside in her gardens – no problem! Anything to be outside. I took photos of this week’s flowers in blossom from her gardens for you to enjoy this week. Well, some have been around, I just didn’t get to them last week. First up, Red Bloom Bergenia:

2007-05-13 008

Flowering Plum. This tree is outdoing itself in blossoming this year:

2007-05-13 021

Korean Spicebush viburnum. Let me tell you, if you want viburnum, this one smells absolutely wonderful:

2007-05-13 028

Creeping Phlox, I think it’s candystripe:

2007-05-13 032

One of the many beautiful Anenomes in blossom right now:

2007-05-13 036

Foam Flower:

2007-05-13 040

And last, but certainly not least, Bleeding Heart:

2007-05-13 042

I love bleeding heart, but I also love all of these plants. Which one is your favorite?

Happy Mother’s Day!

Happy Mother’s Day Dear Mum! And Happy Mother’s Day to everyone else who is a mother, too! Every Mother deserves the nice things of the world given to them on a silver platter! And since my Mum loves roses, I give you a photo of my Mum’s roses from her garden a couple of years ago. Not only are these roses beautiful, they smell wonderful, too.


I hope everyone enjoys their day! Hugs to everyone who is a Mother. And hugs to those of you who aren’t, too!

Previous Older Entries Next Newer Entries